Here at The James Company, as we are hunkered down riding out the pandemic, we find ourselves reflecting on those steadfast values that now come to mean all the more to us.  Kinship is one of those values.  I am grateful for the impactful writing and story-telling of Gregory Boyle S.J., founder of Homeboy Industries.  He refers to kinship as the game-changer … the pearl of great price.  He reminds us that the pathway to mutual healing and restoration is through the experience of encounter and connection.  In this time of social distancing, as many struggle with the stress of isolation and despair, Boyle’s call for kinship rings true.  Now, more than ever, we need to offer what he calls “a community of tenderness”.

Two weeks ago, I signed up through my own congregation to make weekly phone calls to elderly members.  I signed up to call Frank.  Although Frank and I had past casual conversations, our weekly phone calls have provided a wonderful setting for us to share each other’s stories.  I am grateful for how my conversations with Frank have fostered kinship.

So my prayer for all of us is this … despite all the disruption, despair and isolation of the current pandemic, may we remain anchored in what Greg Boyle calls “the invitation to delight in each other … no matter what. To breathe in the spirit that delights in our being … and then breathe that out into the world.”  Be well.

Fred Stoltz, Program Director
The James Company
Phone: (414) 690-3426
Email:  fstoltz@jamescompany.com